Mahdi


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Mahdi

(mä`dē) [Arab.,=he who is divinely guided], in Sunni IslamIslam
, [Arab.,=submission to God], world religion founded by the Prophet Muhammad. Founded in the 7th cent., Islam is the youngest of the three monotheistic world religions (with Judaism and Christianity). An adherent to Islam is a Muslim [Arab.,=one who submits].
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, the restorer of the faith. He will appear at the end of time to restore justice on earth and establish universal Islam. The Mahdi will be preceded by al-Dajjal, a Muslim antichrist, who will be slain by Jesus. This belief is not rooted in the Qur'an but has its origins in Jewish ideas about the Messiah and in the Christian belief of the second coming of Jesus. Among the ShiitesShiites
[Arab., shiat Ali,=the party of Ali], the second largest branch of Islam, Shiites currently account for 10%–15% of all Muslims. Shiite Islam originated as a political movement supporting Ali (cousin and son-in-law of Muhammad, the Prophet of Islam) as the
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 the concept of the Mahdi takes a different form (see imamimam
[Arab.,=leader], in Islam, a recognized leader or a religious teacher. Among the Sunni the term refers to the leader in the Friday prayer at the mosque; any pious Muslim may function as imam.
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).

In the history of Islam, many men have arisen who claimed to be the Mahdi. They usually appeared as reformers antagonistic to established authority. The best known of these in the West was Muhammad Ahmad, 1844–85, a Muslim religious leader in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan. He declared himself in 1881 to be the Mahdi and led a war of liberation from the oppressive Egyptian military occupation. He died soon after capturing Khartoum. In his reform of Islam the Mahdi forbade the pilgrimage to Mecca and substituted the obligation to serve in the holy war against unbelievers. His followers, known as Mahdists, for a time made pilgrimages to his tomb at Omdurman. The final defeat of the Mahdists in 1898 at Omdurman by an Anglo-Egyptian army under Lord KitchenerKitchener, Horatio Herbert Kitchener, 1st Earl
, 1850–1916, British field marshal and statesman. Trained at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich (1868–70), he had a brief period of service in the French army
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 gave Great Britain control of Sudan.

Bibliography

See P. M. Holt, The Mahdist State in the Sudan (2d ed. 1970).

Mahdi

 

the Muslim messiah or savior.

Among the Shiites, the Mahdi is the “hidden” imam. The teachings about the Mahdi attracted the oppressed and exploited masses who believed that the Mahdi would appear before the end of the world and would restore justice on earth. In medieval and modern times, belief in the Mahdi has been widespread in antifeudal and national liberation movements.

Mahdi

1. the title assumed by Mohammed Ahmed. ?1843--85, Sudanese military leader, who led a revolt against Egypt (1881) and captured Khartoum (1885)
2. Islam any of a number of Muslim messiahs expected to forcibly convert all mankind to Islam
References in periodicals archive ?
The chilling video, made on a mobile phone, shows Mahdi lying on the street but still moving his arms and legs.
Arresting Mahdi in the midst of diplomatic talks, in which the NUP was largely seen to be making concessions to the government, has destroyed the faith that other parties had for the talks and perplexed many onlookers.
Sadiq Al Mahdi, Prime Minister of Sudan in the country's last elected civilian government and ousted by then Colonel Omar Hassan al-Bashir in 1989, is the head of Sudan's leading opposition party, the Umma Party.
A Lebanese national, Mahdi began his career after completing a course at Shouf Technical College in Lebanon.
HH Prime Minister confirmed through a phone call that "information about a Mahdi army in Kuwait is incorrect" Al-Khurainej said in a press statement.
We may face something like the Syrian scenario rather than an Egyptian or Tunisian," Mahdi told Reuters in an interview.
Mahdi asked for the intervention of the medical services on the basis that he had witnessed a heavily injured person on the side of the road.
BAGHDAD, Sep 5, 2010 (TUR) -- Iraq's Shiite Vice President Adel Abdul Mahdi has said efforts in the country to form a new government had proved unsuccessful to make "significant progress," adding that he welcomed efforts exerted by Turkey and some other countries to facilitate a new Iraqi government.
Summary: Political and religious Iranian figures slammed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for his repeated comments about the Mahdi, or who Muslims's believe is mankind's savior, and warned him about
Abdul Mahdi claimed credit, saying the law-abiding members of his body-guard battalion had solved the case and that Bolani was playing politics.
Fatima Hussein chased down five men in a pick-up who snatched three-year-old Mahdi Ali as he played outside his home, in Isa Town, last month.
KAMIL MAHDI, who was warned off for ten years in September 2003 following his conviction for causing unnecessary suffering to five horses, has sounded out the BHA about making an early comeback to the training ranks.